IDF Knew Golan Attack Coming, Preparations Failed

Har Dov anti-tank missile strike was anticipated but checkpoint was moved to another exposed spot; barriers placed but after attack.

Ari Yashar ,

IDF on northern border
IDF on northern border
Basial Awidat/Flash 90

Two IDF soldiers were killed on Wednesday by a Hezbollah anti-tank missile attack on Har Dov in the Golan Heights, but new revelations indicate the IDF knew such an attack was imminent, and made preparations that apparently went wrong.

A day after the attack in which Major Yochai Kalengel hy''d (25) and Staff Sergeant Dor Chaim Nini hy''d (20) were killed, Channel 10 revealed that the IDF knew days before the lethal barrage that Hezbollah was planning an attack specifically in the Har Dov area.

Hezbollah had previously threatened an attack after last Sunday one of its senior terrorists was killed with five other Hezbollah terrorists and an Iranian general, who were scouting to plan an attack on the Golan Heights.

One of the possible scenarios the IDF was aware of was an anti-tank missile attack, and in preparation the northern Utzbat Hagalil (91st Division) decided to move the checkpoint at the entrance to Ghajar village.

The checkpoint normally stood at the Tank Junction, an area completely visible from Lebanese territory. A day before the lethal strike, it was moved several hundred meters - to an area that was still visible from Lebanon.

As a result, military vehicles were gathered at the checkpoint on Wednesday providing a target for Hezbollah's attack.

Due to the warning that Hezbollah was planning an attack, IDF forces were ordered to change locations and not be in visible sites, but the Givati Brigade's Tzabar unit which was lethally struck did not have its convoy to Har Dov cancelled.

Hezbollah fired Kornet anti-tank missiles from a point in Lebanon to the north of Metula, launching from nearly the weapon's maximum range of 5,500 meters (just under 3.5 miles).

Only after the attack did the IDF decide to place concrete barriers to guard vehicles on the route which was hit by the rockets. Likewise it was decided to maintain the raised level of preparedness on the northern border throughout the weekend.

IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz toured the area of the attack on Thursday evening, where he was given an overview of the investigation into the incident by top commanders.